Gough describes her girl-meet-girl love story as, “a book that's full of humour and slapstick, while still dealing with important issues like sexuality and identity.” Delilah, the book’s main character, is forced to manage the family cafe at the same time as trying to survive her final year of high school. To top it all off, a misguided crush on one of the cool girls makes Del the school punchline as well.
“The thing I so love about The Flywheel is not just that Del is smart, gutsy and totally lacking in pretension,” says Hardie Grant Egmont Publishing Director, Hilary Rogers. “And it's not just that Del's gay, and totally fine with it. It's that all these elements are just the backdrop of the story, as they are in real life. This is a fresh and warm post-coming-out story for teens. Finally!”
“It’s for anyone who knows the agony of falling in love”, says Gough, who has dreamed of being a writer since before she knew how. “I wrote The Flywheel because I wanted to write the sort of novel that I would’ve liked to read when I was dealing with my own questions of sexuality, identity and ambition. I wanted it to be something that was fun to read (so many coming-out stories are full of tragedy and angst) while still acknowledging the challenges that this period in your life can throw at you.”
Described as “an exciting new voice in Aussie YA” (Danielle Binks), Gough’s debut is certain to get YA readers excited. “It's always a privilege helping a new author bring her novel into being,” says Rogers. “But Erin's skill and calm and humour, even under the piercing editorial spotlight, often made me forget this was Erin's debut.”
Gough won Hardie Grant Egmont’s Ampersand Project in 2013. She’s in good company, with fellow Ampersand Project winner Melissa Keil recently being nominated for the 2014 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards for Life in Outer Space. Her debut novel was also nominated for a CBCA award in 2014 and won the inaugural Ena Noel award from IBBY Australia.